Dead snakes and mice, toxic sludge: How pathogens go unnoticed in America’s water towers

Many water towers have been left to fester, sometimes making people sick. The federal EPA has been looking into uniform regulations for years.

An article in USA TODAY by Kyle Bagenstose, Published 4:00 AM CDT May. 21, 2021 Updated

In March of last year, residents in the small coastal community of Delray Beach, Florida, noticed something strange about the water coming from their taps.

It was discolored. Smelly. Flecked with bits of dirt.

“You looked at it, and it wasn’t clean,” resident Reeve Bright said. “You started seeing the ice coming out of the ice maker, and you’re going, ‘What the heck is going on? There is stuff in the frozen water.’”

Complaints to the city prompted the discovery of sediment that had accumulated inside one of the city’s massive water storage tanks. The sediment had traveled along with the water into cups, cookware, ice trays, and bathtubs.

It wasn’t a freak occurrence or the result of some unavoidable problem. An investigation found no records that the tank had ever been cleaned since it was built.

In 1972.

Water storage tanks, especially those sitting atop towers emblazoned with logos, serve as the most visible symbol of an amenity most Americans take for granted – clean water for drinking, cooking, and bathing.

Read Full Story Here: